The G.A.R. Building Detroit

The Grand Army of the Republic



With the inspections picking up on most of the mechanical work, the teams putting the walls in place are back on site and helping us to get a better feel for the partitions in the building. The walls we’ve been imagining for years are now becoming reality.

The first two floors of the building to see life this fall will be the ground level with both the Republic Tavern and the Parks and Rec Diner and the the uppermost floor (the former assembly hall) which will soon the new home to our media firm, Mindfield.

With each new round of photos there are fewer tools and equipment strewn about. As you can see the mechanical elements are now found hung from the walls and ceiling and soon to be buried behind drywall.DSC_4567Photo taken of the diner interior from just inside the entrance. The opening to the left will be the restroom and the right will lead to the kitchen. The counter sits to the right along the Cass Street side.DSC_4587Soon to be restrooms in the Republic Tavern. They both sit behind the bar back. The opening to the far right leads to the kitchen.DSC_4573Interior shot of a section of the kitchen itself. Note how crowded the ceiling is becoming.DSC_4609This shot shows where the balcony in the Assembly Hall meets the wall running along Grand River. The restored plaster cove and new ceiling above. I think the fabric hanging there might be an old tablecloth we took over for a pizza party with the Mindfield staff. No idea why it’s still hanging there.DSC_4621Different angle on the same corner as above. The open trench is the ceiling will be filled with the plaster molding which is currently being recreated. In the bottom right of the photo, you can see the curved proscenium above the original stage.DSC_4623A close up of the coved ceiling with remnants of the plaster molding. The new sprinkler pipes sneak in from the left. Falcon Fire systems has just the attic and basement left before they’ve fully “sprinklered” the G.A.R. building.

All photos by Lindsey Yeo

Author: G.A.R. Building

The G.A.R. building was purchased by the media production firm Mindfield from the City of Detroit in November, 2011. Mindfield has started renovating the G.A.R., with opening slated for November 2014. Mindfield plans to occupy the top two floors itself, lease the ground floor for 2 restaurants, and dedicate a memorial to Civil War Veterans. The G.A.R. Building was designed by architect Julian Hess, and constructed at 1942 West Grand River and Cass as an appropriate structure for meetings and other G.A.R. related activities. The original construction cost was split between the Grand Army of the Republic (who paid $6000 of the cost) and the city of Detroit (who paid the remainder of the $44,000 total cost). Construction commenced in 1897 on the five-story building.

3 thoughts on “WHERE’S “WALL”-DO?

  1. So much has been accomplished since I was last there! Can’t wait to see the finished project. Awesome to say the least!

  2. I am so glad that I was able to join one of Sean’s tours in the early phase. You are doing an incredible job of re-building and supporting positive development in Detroit. We really need more people like you.

    Sincere thanks,

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